#BookTour #Giveaway #CharacterCasting: ' Courting the Countess' by Donna Hatch
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Donna Hatch is the author of the best-selling “Rogue Hearts Series,” and a winner of writing awards such as The Golden Quill and the International Digital Award. A hopeless romantic and adventurer at heart, she discovered her writing passion at the tender age of 8 and has been listening to those voices ever since. She has become a sought-after workshop presenter, and also juggles freelance editing, multiple volunteer positions, and most of all, her six children (seven, counting her husband). A native of Arizona who recently transplanted to the Pacific Northwest, she and her husband of over twenty years are living proof that there really is a happily ever after.
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When charming rake Tristan Barrett sweeps Lady Elizabeth off her feet, stealing both her heart and a kiss in a secluded garden, her brother challenges Tristan to a duel. The only way to save her brother and Tristan from harm—not to mention preserve her reputation—is to get married. But her father, the Duke of Pemberton, refuses to allow his daughter to marry anyone but a titled lord. The duke demands that Elizabeth marry Tristan’s older brother, Richard, the Earl of Averston. Now Elizabeth must give up Tristan to marry a man who despises her, a man who loves another, a man she’ll never love. Richard fears Elizabeth is as untrustworthy as his mother, who ran off with another man. However, to protect his brother from a duel and their family name from further scandal, he agrees to the wedding, certain his new bride will betray him. Yet when Elizabeth turns his house upside down and worms her way into his reluctant heart, Richard suspects he can’t live without his new countess. Will she stay with him or is it too little, too late?
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Description of Elizabeth as seen through Richard’s eyes:
Lady Elizabeth’s thick hair had been pulled back into a loose knot at the crown of her head, with a few wayward tendrils escaping to frame her face. Her lowered eyes were thickly lashed, fringed by a pair of high, arched brows. Her fair, unblemished skin bore no hint of a freckle. Her lips, though thinner than he would have liked, still had a pleasing shape. Her slightly pointed chin exactly like her father’s led the eye down to a slender, graceful neck.
Perhaps he’d been so focused on Leticia that he’d simply not taken the time to really look at Lady Elizabeth. Furthermore, her younger sister, Lady Joanna, a beauty of stunning proportions, outshone everyone within miles. But now that he gave Lady Elizabeth his full attention, he discovered her own quiet beauty.
At his silence, she glanced at him before her eyes darted away. Then, perhaps because she’d seen something reassuring, or unexpected, she met his gaze. Her clear, gray-green eyes danced back and forth between his as if to divine his thoughts.
The seductress of last night had vanished, and in her place sat a young, innocent, vulnerable girl. His future wife.
Description of Richard as Elizabeth first sees him:
Tristan left Miss Wentworth’s side and moved to stand next to his brother near the French doors. Their dark superfine frockcoats and waistcoats, and crisp, white shirts contrasted with the blue and gold wallpaper and white woodwork. The Barrett brothers made a stunning pair—raven-haired, tall, and beautifully proportioned like two Greek gods, yet so opposite in temperament. Tristan, charming and gregarious, had caught her eye the moment she’d seen him. Though she’d pretended to be disapproving and unaffected by his flirtations, he’d wormed through her defenses. His grin banished the gloom in her thoughts, the gloom in her life, the gloom in her heart. The Earl of Averston spoke wearing his usual solemn expression. Elizabeth had spent very little time in Averston’s presence, but to her knowledge, he never smiled. How the earl could be so unlike his delightful brother defied reason.
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